Norway's first electric plane crash-lands on lake

Country hopes to develop programme for all domestic flights to be electric by 2040

epa07773585 People effort to salvage the Avinor's electric aircraft a Pipistrel Alpha Electro flown by pilot Avinors CEO Dag Falk-Petersen and his passenger, secretary of state, Aase Marthe Johansen Horrigmo, which had to make an emergency landing in Nornestjoenn in Arendal, Norway, 14 August 2019. Both passenger and pilot came from the incident without injuries.  EPA/HAKON MOSVOLD LARSEN  NORWAY OUT
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Norway's first battery-powered aircraft crash-landed on a lake on Wednesday in a setback for the country's aviation strategy.

Police said the pilot and passenger escaped unhurt.

The plane's owner, airport operator Avinor, said last year that it hoped to have electric commercial passenger flights by 2025.

The two-seat plane was piloted by Avinor chief executive Dag Falk-Petersen, who had invited high-profile passengers to see the opportunities for electric flight.

The Alpha Electro G2 plane, produced by Slovenia's Pipistrel, landed nose-down and partly submerged at the end of a lake near Arendal in southern Norway.

The cause of the crash was not immediately clear.

"I made a mayday call and looked for a place to land," Mr Falk-Petersen told public broadcaster NRK. "This is not good for the work we do."

His passenger during the crash, Aase Marthe Horrigmo, a junior government minister, was among Avinor's guests on Wednesday, as was Environment Minister Ola Elvestuen who flew earlier in the day.

The government has asked Avinor to develop a programme for all-electric domestic aviation by 2040.